Albion spikers outduel Notre Dame in marathon five set battle of unbeatens
In a clash of undefeated league leaders, Albion outlasted host Notre Dame in a marathon five set non league match this evening.
Albion, which leads the Niagara-Orleans League at 7-0, emerged with a thrilling sea-saw 25-23, 15-25, 25-22, 22-25, 25-19 victory over Notre Dame which leads the Genesee Region League Division 1 with a 9-0 record.
Albion jumped out to an early 12-3 lead in the decisive fifth set. Meghan Hurley served up points 2-5, a run which included a spike kill and a block for points by Sara Millspaugh and a block by Chanyce Powell. Powell followed up by serving up points 7-12, a run started with an ace and highlighted by back-to-back kills by Millspaugh who had a huge match for the Purple Eagles both at the net and at the service line.
Two kills by Powell and a kill and a block by Kelsee Soule helped to steadily up the Albion advantage to 24-14.
Notre Dame did rally back to within five at 24-19 but Millspaugh capped off her big night with a kill for the set and match winning point.
“It was an awesome game,” said Albion Coach Ann Capacci. “The atmosphere in the gym was just great. It was like sectionals. Notre Dame is undefeated in their league and they have a very good team and our kids really upped their game. It was a great match that helps us get better and helps us prepare for what is ahead for us.”
Millspaugh had 10 kills for points on the night as Powell had 8, Soule 6 and Aleah Foos 5.
Albion also got off to a good start taking the opening set 25-23 as Millspaugh served up the final five points, a run which included an ace and a tip by Soule for the set winner.
Notre Dame answered back with a 25-15 win to even the match as the Irish won 9 of the last 11 points to break away from a close 16-13 contest.
The sea-saw battle would continue as Albion took a narrow 25-22 win in the third set. Up by a narrow 18-17 margin the Purple Eagles got a key run of six straight service points by Millspaugh (19-24) to key that victory.
Notre Dame though again answered right back, this time with a come-from-behind 25-22 win in the fourth set to reknot the match at 2-2.
A five point run of serve points by Hurley (15-19) followed by back-to-back kills by Soule and Millspaugh gave Albion what looked to be a commanding 22-14 lead but Notre Dame rallied back with 11 straight points to claim the win and even the match.
That set the stage for the decisive fifth set which saw the early runs of service points by Hurley and Powell along with the spiking kills by Millspaugh key Albion to the victory.
Byron-Bergen boosted its Genesee Region League record to 9-1 with a straight set victory over Lyndonville. Leah Catalino had 11 digs, Cora Ivison 11 digs, 2 kills and 3 aces, Sadie Vincent 6 digs and Bryanna D’Agostino 4 digs, 4 kills and 3 aces to lead the Lady Bees.
Morgan Hungerford had 4 aces, 2 kills, 5 digs and 2 blocks for Lyndonville as Brooke Allen added 2 aces and 7 digs and Jenn Wetherbee 6 digs.